I-Got-5-On-It's Blog

Here's a list of changes I'd make to the UEFA European Championship Qualifiers

By I-Got-5-On-It | View all Posts
Posted Thursday, September 02, 2010 01:42 PM   5 comments

If I was UEFA President like Michel Platini     The same would also apply to the European section of World Cup qualifiers when they come around.As some of you may have already noticed the European games have been moved back a day from their usual Saturdays and Wednesdays to Friday and Tuesdays.This is to give the players an extra day of rest before going back to their clubs which is a good thing but Fridays are a strange day for matches and it also means that there are no more afternoon kickoffs like there were on Saturdays but countries do have the option to play on a Saturday if they so wish.I have a better idea to reduce the congestion during the footballing season and the number of games being played

Firstly there are too many footballing federations in Europe some of which aren't even in Europe to begin with, most notably Israel,Kazakhstan and other central Asian countries in the Caucasus region. OK you could make the argument that they're in between Europe and Asia but I can't see why Kazakhstan,Azerbaijan and possibly Armenia can't play in Asia.With the Armenian's & the Azeri's refusal to play each other due to their early 1990's conflict and ongoing territory dispute it would be the perfect solution to have one or both of them sent to play in the Asian federation.

Then I would go about making the European groups smaller like they do in Africa and Asia by having a set of preliminary qualifiers for the bottom feeders.So the likes of San Marino,Andorra, Liechenstein, Luxembourg,Malta,Faroe Islands,Montenegro, Moldova, Belarus and possibly Iceland and Cyprus, would all play in a two legged knock out style round for 1 or 2 places up for grabs in the Group Stages.This would take place in the Summer after whatever major tournament was on, either WC or Euros, before the proper qualifiers would begin.This would reduce the number in the groups to 40 countries as opposed to the current 53, minus the host country for the European Championships or World Cup if applicable.
So having 8 groups of 5 would be the optimum situation which would mean less meaningless games with rubbish teams ,less interference with the Club season.
Also the number of friendlies would be cut and would only take place in the summer or before a major tournament was to begin so players would not be getting injured before crucial games or periods of the season for their clubs and also clubs would not have to make their players available to their countries for friendlies if they thought they were at risk of injury or fatigue.

Maybe one valid point against having the bottom feeders out of the qualfying process is that they loss out on vital revenue from TV money and match ticket sales but if your national stadium only holds 3000 and your population is only 20,000 I don't think there is that much money to be made in the first place.Prelim qualifiers would give these lesser countries more experience playing against teams of their own level. What's the point of playing a full set of qualifiers against the big nations only to lose 10 times conceding 60 plus goals in the process.

I should also mention that other countries could soon be knocking on UEFA's door looking to join the club, notably Greenland, Madeira,Kosovo, and even Uzbekistan   

Also I don't see why the expansion of EURO 2016 went ahead in which 24 teams will compete, that's nearly half the countries in Europe.

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mr_bollox says:
9/2/2010 6:25:28 PM
some very good points 5 but the likes of san marino and andorras will always play full internationals, its all about tv money even if its a guaranteed win,

friendlies will disappear soon because there just isnt time in the international schedule anymore.

once blatter finally leaves fifa, i anticipate some changes, i think eventually european championships, copa americas will eventually be abolished and we'll have a world cup every 2 years, we live in such an accessible global world, there's no reason to have confederation  tournaments anymore
I-Got-5-On-It says:
9/2/2010 8:36:52 PM

I suppose they won't be forced to go thru a preliminary qualification process but if UEFA gets bigger they may have no choice.The minnows have no real power at the table so if Platini and the other big countries like Spain,England,Germany,France etc wanted to do away with them they probably could.
Another point in their favour is that these smaller countries have improved slightly in recent years probably due to TV revenue and other sources of income, especially Cyprus who have proved themselves to be tricky opponents at times (just ask Steve Staunton).With the increased revenue they can hire better coaches like Berti Vogts out in Azerbaijan and Brian Kerr in the Faroes.I guess they wouldn't have been able to afford these guys without the valuable TV money from playing the likes of Germany,France,Italy,England etc  


I-Got-5-On-It says:
9/3/2010 7:42:18 PM

I think after tonight's performance Cyprus may have earned themselves an automatic bye past any prelim qualifiers

Great result for them 4-4 draw in Portugal  

Not forgetting Belarus either, beating France 1-0 in Paris

sharpster_XX says:
9/3/2010 8:12:43 PM

yeah personally i see no point in all these cups, world cup euros and african fine abolish the rest, agree the bottom feeders should do a sub group those games are pointless when its Poland 10-0 San Marino.

I think the qualifiers in genral need looking at, to even the groups out

I-Got-5-On-It says:
9/7/2010 6:37:35 PM

Liechtenstein almost had a very famous draw tonight in Scotland 

Shame they conceded a very late goal deep in injury time and ended up losing 2-1 

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